Apr. 26, 1862. J. W. Cannon to John Milton Cannon and Ellender Malinda Cannon

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    Camp Smith    Savnah    Georgia    April the

                                                            26th 1862

                                    Dear brother & sister

i this time take my pen in hand to let you know

that i am well at this time & i truly hope

when thse few lins comes to hand tha ma

find you and family well i have nothing

much to wright to you at this time only

that i have bin well evr sence i left home

this is amity prety cuntry wher & the health

of this betElion is vry good at this time we

are just fuling a bout whear just like

comon i like this plase mity well so fair i

wold like to be up thair to see you all but the

distence is so grate that i cant be thair know

i have seen corn from wast hy to head hie

i want you to wright to me & tell me how

you are getting a long with yore crope & tell me

how the wheat is doing & tell me how the rest

of the folks is geting along with ther crops

i wold be glade to get a leter from some of

you ever weeake or ofner if i cold    so turn over

 

Page 2

 

Dear brother i want you to wright to me

as ofning as you can and tell all the rest

to rite i have not recived my bouty yet but

i think i will before long we have plenty to

eat at this time of cake & coffey & sugur & molasses

& som cabbeg & arsh potatos & we have arite smart

of worke to do loding boats with wood and

brick to blockcad the river doon below

fort jackson the yankees has left ther we think

that tha have gon to charlton to have afight

thair was won rigment of our men left hear

this morning to goo to  charlton our batalion

is not armed yet but tha say that will

arm us as fast as tha can tha are talking of

leting teen men volenteer out of all the compneys

& mec agurriller compney & am them with

sharpes rieles & let them go about eny where ever

tha can find the enemy & kill them i think

that i will go with them so i must come

to aclose by saing to you to wright as soon as you get

this leter i remain yore brother untell death J. W. Cannon to . . .

 

 

 

Camp Smith, Savannah, Georgia                              April the 26th, 1862

Dear brother & sister,

I this time take my pen in hand to let you know that I am well at this time, & I truly hope when these few lines comes to hand they may find you and family well.  I have nothing much to write to you at this time, only that I have been well ever since I left home.  This is a mighty pretty country here, and the health of this battalion is very good at this time.  We are just fooling about here just like common.  I like this place mighty well so far.  I would like to be up there to see you all, but the distance is so great that I can’t be there now.  I have seen corn form waisthigh to head high.  I want you to write to me and tell me how you are getting along with your crop & tell me how the wheat is doing & tell me how the rest of the folks is getting along with their crops.  I would be glad to get a letter from some of you ever week or oftener if I could.  Dear brother, I want you to write to me as often as you can and tell all the rest to write.  I have not received my bounty yet, but I think I will before long.  We have plenty to eat at this time of cake & coffee & sugar & molasses & some cabbage & Irish potatoes, and we have a right smart of work to do loading boats with wood and brick to blockade the river down below Fort Jackson.[1] The Yankees has left there.  We think that they have gone to Charleston to have a fight.  There was one regiment of our men left here this morning to go to Charleston.  Our battalion is not armed yet, but they say that [they] will arm us as fast as they can.  They are talking of letting ten men volunteer out of all the companies and make a guerrilla company and arm them with Sharps rifles and let them go about any wherever they can find the enemy & kill them.  I think that I will go with them.  So I must come to a close by saying to you to write as soon as you get this letter.  I remain your brother until death. 

J. W. Cannon[2] to [John Milton Cannon and Ellender Malinda Cannon]

 


 

[1] Built in 1808, Old Fort Jackson, just outside Savannah, Georgia, was used extensively throughout the Civil War to fight the Union Navy.  It served as the home port of the ironclad CSS Georgia and the CSS Savannah.  On December 17, 1864, at the end of his infamous “March to the Sea,” Union General William T. Sherman demanded “the surrender of Savannah and its dependent forts.”  Confederate General William Hardee, realizing that his forces were heavily outnumbered, decided to withdraw from Savannah.   In order to keep the CSS Georgia out of the hands of the Union Army, the Confederates scuttled the ship across the river from the fort.   On December 20, 1864, General Sherman captured Savannah and Fort Jackson.

 

[2] James Wiley Cannon was 27 when he wrote this letter to his brother and sister-in-law who were both still on their farm in Gordon County, Georgia.  Wiley was born in Georgia on December 13, 1834, to Russel and Elizabeth Cannon.   In 1857 (approx), Wiley married Elizabeth Anderson (Mrs. Woodward) who was born in September 1834 in South Carolina.  Wiley and Elizabeth had eight children:  James B. W., b. 1857; Mary W., b. 1865; Lovena/Louvenia/Lavinia, born February 1867; John H., born in 1870; Thomas Wile, b. 1/1873; Nancy Elizabeth, b. 1875; and two other children (dates unknown).  Wiley lived to be 92, dying on May 6, 1926 in Gordon County, Georgia.

 

 

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